Aron Wellman Talks Nest, Buying Strategies, HISA On Writers' Room

It's a busy time of year for Aron Wellman's Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, with yearling sale season now in full swing alongside the iconic Saratoga and Del Mar meets. But Wellman and his partners are full of energy these days thanks in large part to their Nest (Curlin)--co-owned with Repole Stable and Michael House--who likely sewed up an Eclipse Award for Champion 3-Year-Old Filly with a dominant victory in the GI Alabama S. Saturday at the Spa. Tuesday, Wellman sat down with the TDN Writers' Room presented by Keeneland as the...

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Background Check: Alabama

In this continuing series, we examine the past winners of significant filly/mare races by the lasting influence they've had on the breed. Up today is the GI Alabama S., one of the oldest stakes races in the country. Dating to 1872, eight years after the first Travers S. was run and 12 years after the first Queen's Plate (the oldest stakes race in North America), the Alabama is the last leg in New York's Triple Tiara following the GI Acorn S. and the GI Coaching Club American Oaks. The major-league...

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Pletcher and Brown Stars Highlight Saratoga Worktab

SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY - Todd Pletcher and Chad Brown were both quite busy Saturday morning at Saratoga, working some of their respective stables' top stars. GI Belmont S. runner-up Nest (Curlin) turned in her final breeze Saturday morning before her rematch with Secret Oath (Arrogate) July 23 in the GI Coaching Club American Oaks. Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher said the filly "worked really well" after she covered five furlongs in company with champion Corniche (Quality Road) in 1:01.44 under jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. on the main track. Secret...

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Six States, Two Without Racing, Join Fight To Derail HISA

The attorneys general from six new states have sided with existing plaintiffs in Oklahoma, West Virginia and Louisiana by filing a Sept. 21 "friend of the court" brief in one of two currently active federal lawsuits aiming to get the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act (HISA) voided for alleged constitutional violations before HISA even goes into effect. Curiously, two of those six states--Alaska and Mississippi--have no current forms of legal pari-mutuel horse racing. The other states expressing support for the alleged unconstitutionality of HISA are Arkansas, Idaho, Nebraska and Ohio....

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Kiaran McLaughlin Talks Saez, Saratoga Training Memories On Writers' Room

Kiaran McLaughlin surprised much of the racing world last year when he abruptly decided to halt his massively successful training career in order to become the jockey's agent for Luis Saez. But it shouldn't surprise anyone to see the success McLaughlin has had handling Saez's book, as the 29-year-old Panamanian is poised to win his first Saratoga riding title. Wednesday, McLaughlin joined the TDN Writers' Room presented by Keeneland to talk about why he made his career shift, the booming results of his partnership with Saez, memories of triumphs in...

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Malathaat Back To Magnificent Best in Alabama

A slight bobble at the break of Saturday's GI Alabama S. at Saratoga may have cost 'TDN Rising Star' Malathaat (Curlin) some early position and consigned her to a four- and five-wide trip. But the good ones rise to the occasion when the chips are down and the daughter of fellow 'Rising Star' Dreaming of Julia (A.P. Indy) called on her considerable class and edged clear late to lead home a 1-2 not only for her superstar sire, but also for breeder Barbara Banke's Stonestreet Farm. Clairiere closed strongly from...

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Swiss Skydiver Confirmed for Oaks

Saturday's GI Alabama S. romper Swiss Skydiver (Daredevil) will contest the Sept. 4 GI Longines Kentucky Oaks, according to the New York Racing Association press department. Trainer Kenny McPeek indicated immediately after the Alabama that that would likely be the next spot for the Peter Callahan colorbearer, but hadn't at that time ruled out facing males in the GI Kentucky Derby. The GII Gulfstream Park Oaks, GIII Fantasy S. and GII Santa Anita Oaks winner and GII Toyota Blue Grass S. runner-up was doing well Sunday according to McPeek's assistant...

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Swiss Skydiver Romps in the Alabama

A week after GI Kentucky Oaks contender Gamine (Into Mischief) romped home in the GI Test S., fellow sophomore filly standout Swiss Skydiver (Daredevil) produced a jaw-dropping victory of her own with an effortless victory in the GI Alabama S.--a Win and You're In race for the GI Longines Breeders' Cup Distaff--Saturday at Saratoga. "She's just really special," said winning trainer Ken McPeek. "Every time we take here over there, she does what you ask her to. She seems to be getting bigger and stronger as the year goes. She's...

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McPeek Duo Headed to Alabama, Swiss Skydiver Still Possible for Derby

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.--With a pair of contenders, trainer Kenny McPeek said he is looking at Saturday's GI Alabama S. more as an important prize than a steppingstone to one or both of the marquee races at Churchill Downs on the first weekend of September. McPeek plans to run Swiss Skydiver (Daredevil) and Envoutante (Uncle Mo) in the 140th Alabama and expects they will both move on to the GI Kentucky Oaks Sept. 4. It is still possible, McPeek said, he might try Swiss Skydiver in the GI Kentucky Derby, but...

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Delaware Handicap Goes Through Dunbar Road

Dunbar Road (Quality Road) lays over a field of eight entered for Saturday's GII Delaware H. Last term's GI Alabama S. and GII Mother Goose S. heroine followed a third-place finish behind Blue Prize (Arg) (Pure Prize) in Keeneland's GI Juddmonte Spinster S. with her lone career off-the-board finish, reporting home fifth behind that foe in the GI Breeders' Cup Distaff at Santa Anita. Trained by Chad Brown, the Peter Brant colorbearer got right back on track with a visually impressive, come-from-behind victory while making her 4-year-old debut in the...

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Saratoga Stakes Added to Road to Derby and Oaks

With the GI Kentucky Derby moved to Sept. 5 and the GI Kentucky Oaks pushed to Sept. 4, a quartet of Saratoga stakes will be added to the qualifying prep races. The GIII Peter Pan S. July 16 and the GI Traver S. Aug., 8 will be part of the Road to the Derby at 100 and 50 points, respectively. Added to the Oaks trail are the GI CCA Oaks July 18 and the GI Alabama S. Aug. 15, both 100 points. Churchill Downs has also announced three additional Derby...

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